Grandville Mon Amour

Publisher: Jonathan Cape

The next in Bryan Talbot's anthropomorphic detective graphic novel series, Grandville, featuring tough badger DI LeBrock is a steampunk extravaganza of murder, political intrigue and good ol' fashioned pulp fiction deduction. The first in the series explored this world where the French Empire (of animals, obviously) enslaved humans and took over the UK.

The second follows on from the events of the first, which had a thinly-veiled 'war on terror' allegory going on. This time, we're dealing with the lies politicians tell to get ahead, with the resistance, with suicide bombings and freedom fighting. We're also dealing with the jailbreak of evil rat Maddock, who is back in Grandville, torturing and killing prostitutes. DI LeBrock, who captured Maddock first time around, is sent to investigate.

The series is a great idea and the book is brilliant, sumptuously drawn (despite the colouring seeming a bit too Photoshop than human in places) and exceedingly pleasing in its pay-offs, of violent set pieces, deductions, investigations, twists and chase sequences. The pace never relents.

Talbot has created the best badger detective since… well… ever.

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